Port of Houston Authority introduces new management team
Executive Director Len Waterworth has implemented a
reorganization of the management structure of the Port of Houston Authority designed to
enhance efficiencies, drive higher profitability and ensure greater
accountability, consistent with the Port Authority's vision and mission. The reorganization
shifts to a structure that is based on collaborative teams with specific
Waterworth, who was appointed to his post in April, has
named a leadership team at the deputy executive director level to lead the new operational
divisions. Under the new structure, the Port Authority has streamlined into
three operational divisions with support from the legal division, each focused
on a key objective: operations (efficient movement of cargo for revenue
optimization), finance and administration (provide support and control overhead
costs) and corporate affairs (economic growth for the community).
Waterworth has tasked this new leadership team to evaluate
and manage their respective divisions to achieve better operational
efficiencies and results under a culture of continuous assessment and
Roger Guenther, formerly vice president, container terminals,
will head the new operations division. Tom Heidt, formerly vice president, finance
and administration, will retain stewardship of those functions and also oversee
other staff support groups. Phyllis Saathoff, who joined the Port Authority in
October with 20 years of port management experience, will head the division of corporate
The legal division, led by general counsel Erik Eriksson,
continues to report directly to Waterworth and is charged with supporting the executive
director and the operational divisions.
Eriksson joined the Port Authority as general counsel in
2005. For nearly 20 years prior to that, Eriksson held legal and management positions
at Maxxam Inc. He is a graduate of Columbia University and Harvard Law School.
Guenther joined the Port of Houston Authority as manager of
maintenance at Barbours Cut in 1988. He was named vice president, container terminals,
in January 2010. Guenther earned a bachelor of science degree in mechanical
engineering from Texas A&M University and has an MBA in international trade
and finance from the University of St. Thomas.
Before joining the Port Authority, Guenther was an engineer
for Emscor/Wolfkran, GMBH in the design and installation of construction tower
Heidt has 30 years of service with the Port Authority. He
has held management positions in the Port Authority's accounting, market development
and planning departments.
Heidt holds a bachelor's degree in finance from Michigan
State University and is a certified Professional Port Manager. He also belongs
to numerous trade and traffic organizations.
Saathoff, prior to joining the Port Authority, had acted as interim
executive port director/CEO of Port Freeport since April 2012. She joined Port
Freeport in 1992 and was named its managing director in 1994.
A certified public accountant and Professional Port Manager,
Saathoff is past president of the National Association of Foreign Trade Zones.
She currently serves on the 2012 Port Authority Advisory Council to the Texas
Department of Transportation. She earned a bachelor of science in accounting,
magna cum laude from the University of Houston-Clear Lake.
The reorganization was reviewed by the Port Commission of
the Port Authority at its October meeting and went into effect earlier this month.